Daredevil sea pirates have allegedly killed four security guards as they kidnapped three foreigners including 2 Russians and 1 Indian on a Nigeria-flagged hopper dredger, AMBIKA, in the Gulf of Guinea on January 2, 2020.
Dryad Global indicated the pirates attacked the 2,153 GT Ambika as she was operating, only three nautical miles from the mouth of the Ramos River, which is just nine nautical miles east of the Forcados Terminal in Nigeria.
The dredger is operated by Deep Frontline Shippers of Nigeria, which could not be contacted.
IHS Markit’s AISLive ship tracking portal shows that the trailing suction hopper dredger is on its way to the Forcados oil terminal off the coast of Nigeria.
It was learnt that a heavy exchange of gun fire between the pirates and about six security personnel on-board the Ambika ensued, during which the four security guards were killed and the remaining two injured.
“After the firefight, the pirates boarded the 1979-built vessel and kidnapped three crew members, leaving behind five sailors. Two abducted men are Russians and one Indian”, the maritime security company further said.
The World Maritime News specifically noted this current attack as the first offshore incident within this location, since November 2018, when a vessel was fired upon.
The 83.5-meter-long dredger, previously known as Galilei 2000 and owned by Jan de Nul, is now owned by a Lagos-based gas development company with operations upriver from the Ramos River entrance.